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TheAppWhisperer – Mobile Photography – Portrait of an Artist Interview with Mariëtte Schrijver

We are delighted to publish our eleventh Portrait of an Artist interview to this special column within TheAppWhisperer, edited by Jennifer Bracewell.  This week Jennifer has interviewed Mariëtte Schrijver a prolific, interesting and talented mobile portraiture photographer, you’ll love this. (foreword by Joanne Carter).

We also have a dedicated Facebook group set up for this Column too for chat and discussion – please join us here, Jennifer regularly adds and contributes to this.  In addition we have set up a Flickr Group dedicated also to this column. We would like you to send all your mobile portraiture images here and we will curate and create showcases of this group.  Please go to the Flickr Group here.

Contact details for Mariëtte:



‘Jo’ – ©Mariëtte Schrijver

What are you earliest memories of photography and/or art?

I was about 5 years old when I first saw an image of Betty Boop (an animated cartoon character created by Max Fleischer). I was fascinated and from that time I started to draw and never stopped. That figure has made that I knew on a very young age that I wanted to become an artist. And I became one. I work as a minimalist and grew up with Zero and the Dutch Nul group. Photography: I found it beautiful and promises to be fascinating but I’m a bad photographer. I come from a very large egg when it comes to filters, exposure and shutter speeds .. but when I met Nico Brons and his mobile art, I started off to make photo’s with my iPhone.  That was just over a year ago.


‘The Third Eye’ – ©Mariëtte Schrijver

What have you sacrificed for your art?

Nothing, I need to give up (unless it is a striking career in how to get rich quick haha ..). On the contrary,  it only has brought me things! Depth, creativity, freedom, a rich emotional life and good friends. Working as an artist shows every day gifts in the form of appreciation and / or emotion of people who watch it.


‘A brown paperbag and a wilted plant’ – ©Mariëtte Schrijver

What is it about portraiture that appeals to you?

I find faces promises to be fascinating. The expression, the feeling; there is always something in a private face. I want the soul to get up … sometimes that is very clear, sometimes that is hidden deep. By playing with light and shadow, subtle (monochrome) color use and using layers I hope that dissecting it into his / her bottom.


‘Nothing is what it looks like’ – ©Mariëtte Schrijver

Why do you think mobile photography and portraiture work so well together?

I think that it is because the photo ‘s you make on a mobile phone are much faster and more spontaneously than with a camera. You can “catch” the face without the lost of spontaneity of expression, wich is not lost through a pose.

You can engrave photographs without getting caught. That way, you’ll see an unexpected privat part of someone. In my opinion that shows the most beautiful portraits.


‘Rebecca birthday’ – ©Mariëtte Schrijver

Tell me about awards and recognition you’ve received.

oh .. I’m happy with all the recognition and awards: large and small. In my work as a minimalist, I got some over the years. In the area of iPhoneArt I’m still a novice. I create relatively short iphone art, do hardly enter contests. I have to develop and grow much more. I will do featured regularly on Instagram and sometimes my work is  used in symposia, and I’m proud of that…but that is not my go. Important for me is that I get asked for (inter) national exhibitions in galleries and museums. More often that happens (Barcelona last December Tokyo in May, New York over a years and a half). that makes me happy and gives me recognition.  And … not least … the chance to earn my bread with my art.


‘My inspiration for #dp_inspiration 2’ – ©Mariëtte Schrijver

Which of your own images are you most proud of and why?

I’m not very proud of my own work fast, but sometimes there are edits that I wich know and feel that they are good. Sometimes from the moment I’ve started it go smooth. Sometimes it’s a struggle to reach the depth I want. the cause:  It’s usually in myself .. because I do not see or don’t want to see. The edits (I am talking about my iphone art only now) where my heart and soul lies include are (among some others):  Jo, A paperbag and wilted plant (number three out of the series … Mrs S and a brown paperbag), The third eye,  and Nothing is what it looks.  And of course I’m always a bit fond on the last one I made ( a birthday surprise for Rebecca Lawrence Weaver…. My edit on a photo of her)


‘A man and his horse 2’ – ©Mariette Schrijver

What have been the high points and low points of your career so far?

Low points I do not know really. Yes … there are times that I have hardly enough to eat: because I sold nothing… Highlights: In my minimal art … the purchase of my work by museums. I think the highlights in the iphone art has  yet to come .. it’s in the air.

‘The cloudmaker’ – ©Mariette Schrijver

What would you say the biggest myth is about mobile photography?

I do not know much of it, but the biggest nonsense I’ve heard about mobile art is that it is not art, that it is all hype and has no connection to serious photography. I find that total nonsense. You, as an artist, decide which app you use, and how to edit your pictures … you have to know what you are doing. You cannot just do something. I think,no…… I’m convinced ..that mobile art a new art movement in the near future. The past teaches us that every new art movement had to compete against prejudices .. So there is hope

‘Another window-dummy’ – ©Mariëtte Schrijver

What/whose work of art would you most like to own?

oh … so much … there are so many great artists that I admire and on whom I sometimes am secretly jealous.  A photo that I really, really am in love with is: Long fielding from Chris Sallquist. My wall screaming is for him :))

‘The light and the dark’ – ©Mariëtte Schrijver

What song would work as the soundtrack to your life?

Several … depending on the time frame. I’m not intent to put my autobiography on the table but life was very often a nasty thing for me. Who wants to know why.. feel, look and read … it all can be found in my work and titles. (Everything is on Instagram) Music is and was always important to me. I brought  comfort, calmness and an opening to cry.

Hollow Talk of the Choir of Young Believers

Paperbag Goldfrapp, No. 5 from Dass Buch der Klange (the book of sounds) by Hans Otte and Mirror in mirror of Arvo Pärt are the most poignant for me.

‘Hidden 2’ – ©Mariëtte Schrijver

Jennifer Bracewell is a native of the San Francisco Bay Area, she is a mother, an artist, a photographer, an iPhoneographer, and music lover. Much of Jennifer’s work is an exploration of self and image: the manipulation of self-portraits to bring out elements of humor, angst and beauty. Jennifer’s other works are an eclectic mix of country shots, animals, and captures of ephemeral moments in everyday life. Her images have been featured and displayed at Pixels at an Exhibition where she was featured artist for July, 2011 as well as other sites like Mashable , featured artist on iPhoneogenic in September, 2011, and major iPhoneographic blogs. Her work was recently featured in an article about iPhoneography in the Sydney Morning Herald. her work has been exhibited at the Adobe Shop in San Francisco, the Giorgi Gallery in Berkeley (September 22 – October 30, 2011), ArtsEye Gallery in Tucson in October-November 2011 and was featured at the Stephane Vereecken Gallery in Belgium in November, 2011 through January, 2012, a solo show with another scheduled for July, 2012, and at the SoHo Digital Art Gallery in New York City in December of 2011. Jennifer’s work was included in the iPhoneography Miami 2012 show in January, 2012. Five of Jennifer’s images were selected for display at Miami’s cutting-edge Lunchbox Gallery in their “iPhoneography: Updated Visual Dialogs” show, hanging from March 8 to April 7, 2012. Jennifer also has pieces in gallery shows this April at Orange County Center for Contemporary Arts and a three-month show this spring in San Francisco at the prestigious ArtHaus gallery, and these were recently featured in the San Francisco Examiner and the local CBS News 7.